August 15

John 6:54-58

“Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood abide in me, and I in them.” vs. 56

It’s no wonder that our favorite name for the Sacrament of the Altar is Holy Communion.John’s graphic description of eating and drinking flesh and blood makes it abundantly clear that in this meal Jesus becomes incarnate in us. As the bread and wine are absorbed into the flesh of our body, Christ himself comes to abide in us and we become his Body. Just as we were once baptized into Christ by water and the word, in Holy Communion the faith connection is strengthened and maintained by our repeated eating and drinking. And it’s not just an individual thing! Not only does communion connect us with Jesus, it makes us one with our fellow believers. There is no better way to celebrate our unity with God and one another than to join together in the eating and the drinking. That’s why we need to take seriously this matter of inclusion in communion–to exclude is to destroy the unity of the Body! How wonderful it has been in recent years to see those old barriers being broken down–it is now commonplace in many of our congregations to hear the words, “All are welcome at the Lord’s Table.” When Jesus fed the 5000 none were excluded–all ate as much as they wanted and were satisfied. In Christ we are all one–he with us and we with him–and no one is to be left out!

Thought for the Day: What did I miss about Holy Communion during the pandemic?

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